Former Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa left Radio Magia today, station of the municipality of Quinindé, in the province of Esmeraldas (northwest), where he reported that he remained detained due to the siege of a mob, while making statements about his campaign by the NO to the consultation popular driven by the Government.
“Stones, sticks, eggs, try to ruin our visit,” he told Efe Correa in a telephone conversation, shortly after leaving the facilities of the radio where he was giving an interview in that town. The ex president accused the mayor of Quinindé of summoning the participants in the mob, who surrounded the station to chant slogans against him and throw eggs.
“The mayor sent out (people) and in response there were about 100 people, (of which) about 15 or 20 very aggressive, even armed,” said Correa, who said that among the assailants, “there were armed bodyguards with 9 mm pistols, which can be identified “and cited among them municipal officials and sympathizers of the late Popular Democratic Movement, a Marxist leftist party, which was an ally of Correa and later illegalized, apprehending some of its leaders. The movement is within the law again and is known as Popular Unity.
He described the participants in the aggression of “very violent people, who have been ambushing us everywhere and in Bourbon (also province of Esmeraldas) trying to harm us”. The mayor of Quinindé, Ángel Torres (from the ranks of the official Alianza PAIS) has repudiated the attack on Correa.
But he said that the former president inflamed the people with his statements on the radio, and that his accusation on the air that he was surrounded by criminal groups, when in fact they were citizens who disagreed with shouts with their views, soured the spirits from the crowd.
Correa’s party, which in past weeks has beaten opponents who shouted in their wake, has also been attacked with eggs, stones or garbage at different points along the route through the provinces of Esmeraldas, Manabí and Los Rivers. As explained to Efe Paola Pavón, who was secretary of the Politics of the Government of Correa and the current president, Lenin Moreno, the former president managed to leave the premises where he was detained for more than three hours thanks to the intervention of the Police, which he used tear gas and riot control.
“For ten years that we have faced electoral processes in the country, we have never witnessed cases of violence that are getting worse at the doors of unconstitutional consultation,” Pavón said. Until early afternoon, the Ecuadorian Executive and the National Electoral Council (CNE) had not ruled on the event that occurred in Quinindé.
Next Sunday, February 4, Ecuadorians are called to express themselves in a popular consultation that includes seven questions of various kinds, such as corruption, indefinite re-election, sexual crimes against children and the environment. President Lenin Moreno, at the head of 36 parties, organizations and platforms calling for the Yes, in front of four headed by former President Rafael Correa asking for the No, urged this week to “participate with joy and optimism, confidence and hope.” (I)